tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN April 22, 2011 10:00am-1:00pm EDT
also we put a cost of living in there. that is a concern i have. a little is about making sure that the cost of living keeps up. we all know that the dollar you have today, 20 years from now will not by as much. the cost of living clause is an attempt to make sure that everybody gets minimal adjustments based on the increases we see in different prices that everyone pays for. host: there was a debate about changing the measuring stick for inflation. can you tell us more about that? guest: there was only one consumer price index when social security was created. since that time, there have been other ones developed. this new law says the same cost- of-living plan should be used everywhere throughout government. social security should be no different. that is what the recommendation was for. host: that is it for our time and we thank you for being here
this morning. you will be continuing in this debate so we will see more of you. thank you for being with us on this friday morning. it is good friday for christians across the world. it is april 22 and we appreciate you spending time with us today. let me show you is coming up next. we'll take you to a live animal. -- a live panel. it is from the brookings annenberg center on biomedical and innovation -- that's the wrong thing. it is the center for american progress. it is prosperity 2050, is equity a superior growth model? we have panelists throughout the day including john podesta from the center for american progress. and some projects -- they will talk about the relationship between equity and growth and what policies can help us achieve equitable growth. that will start shortly. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011]
on u.s. economic growth and classic equality. live coverage from the center for american progress to get underway in just a moment on c- span. on c-span2, you can see live coverage and c-span 2. >> good morning, and in as vanessa cárdenas, the director of progress 2050. we seek to discuss the implications of the democratic change in our nation -- demographic change in our nation. by 2015, our country will become an increasingly diverse nation. -- 2050 our country will become an increasingly diverse nation. exports and implications of demographic change by identifying a promoting ideas and policies inclusive of people of color. promoting a message and from
works for the focused on the promise of diversity by developing new leaders in collaboration between mainstream institutions and organizations that work with communities of color. we're very pleased to co-sponsor this event with policylink, a national research institute that seeks to a dance the economic and social equity. we will hear from noted experts to discuss the relationship between economic inclusion and long-term economic growth and about policy changes that create an economy that works for all americans. we're looking forward to the discussion. with that, i would like to welcome angela glover blackwell, founder and ceo of policylink. [applause] >> i am delighted to be here and thrilled we're having this conversation because i think it is a conversation that is long overdue and we need to really explore in depth what it is
that is going to be required for us to create a society in which everyone can participate and prosper. we are an organization at policylink dedicated to equity. what do i mean? just and fair inclusion into a society in which all can participate and prosper. as we think about the future and think about the future of this nation and what the challenges will be, equity looms as one of the things we're going to have to understand in depth, develop strategies to pursue it, policies that support it and measures that allow us to know how we are doing as we go along the bank why? because we think the future depends on what we do about equity. let me say a word about what i think some of the major challenges are we're going to have to confront as we go forward. one of those is going to have to -- will have is focusing on the middle class. the middle class is will rubble
and at risk. the middle-class is one of the things that all agree has absolutely made this country strong. you can identify any poor country in the nation. what makes it port is not the absence of rich people, but the absence of a middle-class. so many people who are low income. the united states does not want to become one of those places. we have to figure out how to have that stable and secure middle-class that has been the hallmark of the nation. we will have to focus also on how we remain competitive in the global economy, how do we have the work force we're going to need to actually be a continuing force. we're going to have to come to grips with climate change and with this nation is contributing to it. all of those challenges, i think, will be tied to how we deal with the nation's changing demographics. the census data coming out is telling us what we knew, but telling us what we thought would
happen is happening even more quickly than we expected. we are a nation now in which 46.5% of those under 18 are people of color. we know we will become a nation in which the majority of people of color by around 2019. we thought by 2050 we would become a nation which the majority of people would be of color and now expect that will happen 2042, possibly earlier. as we think about where we are in this nation, changing our demographics, we have to come to grips with the things we have not come to grips with at all. those are even more important than they have been in the past. for example, we have not ever dealt with our racial divide in this nation. we have made progress, made a lot of progress, but the racial divide continues. that divide is turning into a generational divide. we are a nation in which 80% of
those who are seniors are white. we are a nation in which 46.5% of those who are under 18 are of color. california is already to the point where those over 65 are 60% of those over 65 and older are white. as we look at how we have failed to embrace the other, the well- being of the other, to become a nation that is one, it is clear our racial divide has become a generational divide because the lack of support for education and for help the communities, because we have not really thought everybody deserves that means that even if you are quite in this nation in dependent on public education, you're facing a public education system that is failing you. our racial divide is becoming a generational divide. even if you are white and lived in an urban area, suffering from
years of disinvestment, you experience being in a community that does not have the support you need in order to thrive. our racial divide is becoming a generational divide. if we think about how we go forward, how we secured a middle-class, how we develop the work force we're going to need, how we deal with climate change of getting out of our cars and moving around on public transportation -- which requires we're comfortable sitting next to the other, if we try to start this problem out board and begin to use the infrastructure investments we have already made, begin to return to cities, return to the older suburbs, we have to make those places people will want to go to. people will not return to communities where schools are not good, no pressure stores, amenities that are required. -- a grocery stores, do not
have the amenities that are required. we need to invest in places that we have not been investing in for decades. it seems when we step back and the about the demographic shifts happening which are inevitable, that we are obliged to actually ask ourselves -- how do we grow? how do we remain competitive? what is the future hold? those of us who have been talking about equity, just and fair conclusion, have been talking about for decades as something that we should do because it is the right thing to do. we have been talking about it often from the standpoint of communities that are latino, african-american communities, and thinking about morally, how we finally meet our obligation as a nation to make sure all are included? and while the conversation has to continue because it is the right conversation have, i think we have gone to the point in our development that equity is not just a cry from special interest
groups, not just a crowded to the right thing, but equity has become the imperative. equity, it is in fact, the superior growth model for the nation. we want to think about that today. is it true? does it have merit? what do need to know before we can pursue it? i think american can see its future. it is a 5-year-old latina, 7- year-old black boy. what we do for them will determine what we do for ourselves, that we know where the future lives, what the future needs. we just need to step up and do the right thing because it is the best thing to do for the nation. thank you. i want to introduce the panel that will begin this discussion and start off by introducing the president of the center for american progress, john podesta, will moderate the first panel. it is equity the superior growth
model? [applause] >> are we in the house? yes. i invite the panel up. thank you. welcome to the center for american progress. fork you vanessa cárdenas leading our progress 2050 and angela glover blackwell, a great partner of ours. we worked on tremendous work together on trying to actually produce results to try to alleviate poverty and try to provide policy ideas that come in fact, found their way into some of the recovery provisions. it is great to be back in partnership with you. with a great panel to explore the link between a strong economy and broadly shared
growth. frankly, a linkage i think that is short shrift in washington, d.c. i look forward to getting into this in some depth. i will start with a couple of framing comments and at a little bit to what angela said, who did a tremendous job. the principle that greater opportunity for all results in greater prosperity for all. i believe that lies at the heart of the american promise and the promise of american experience. it drove millions of people to come here. it still does today. people come here in search of greater economic freedom. it allows the united states to emerge as the world's economic powerhouse, and the clean middle-class nation. the american dream in the 20th century was not just aspirational. it really was the operating system for a tremendous engine of economic growth.
unfortunately, i think the tides have changed. we seem to have rejected 100 years of economic history and experience in order that the conventional wisdom, i think, now has become that in order to fairly sure the fruits of the economy, we have to sacrifice growth in the united states. i think that is an assumption that is not borne out by our history. but you see it, i think, embodied and economic theories pushed ford in the u.s., particularly, in the blueprint for the federal budget which has been passed by the house of representatives which would shred the social safety net to provide even more tax cuts to corporations and the wealthiest americans. yet our experience tells us an equitable growth does not make our country or economy stronger.
we have had 30 years i think of trickle-down economic policies. quality is worse today than it has been since 1928. we will get to the statistics and a bit with our panel. we are releasing a paper today at the back of the room that focuses on the linkage between equity, diversity, and growth in our economy today. if you'll permit me, bill and i served together in the clinton administration. sometimes i think we have attached the conducted an experiment in america between 1992 and 1993 and 2008 for two different visions about the way one needs to drive economic policy, one focused really on investing in people and human capital vs one i think i would
characterize as sort of trickle- down between the eight years of clinton and eight years of president bush when he cut taxes for the very wealthiest americans. we have some results from that experiment. just to tick off a fruits -- a few, we have a little booklet or hold out that we give you the comparison between those approaches. growth was twice as strong during the eight years of clinton as to meet eight years of bush. job growth was 10 times as strong during the eight years of clinton. that was even before the great recession. household income went up by 6000 or $6,500 during those eight years, dropped by $2,500 under bush. i guess i need to get to the
fact we left the administration with a $300 surplus that turned into $1.20 trillion deficit by the time president obama came into office wages were up, poverty went down under clinton. i think that is a mine experiment about what is produced just not more equitable distribution of income, but a stronger growth model. that is why we here at the center have begun to explore this relationship between middle-class, the support for the middle class and economic growth both globally through our network and domestically through our progress 2050 initiative and other work of our economic team. we're lucky to have three of the world's leading experts joining us for the discussion. and introduced them. -- let me introduce them.
, prof.dr. manuel pastor of geography and american studies and ethnicity at the university of southern california. he has extensively researched economic, and terminal and social conditions facing low income, urban communities in the u.s. -- environmental and social conditions facing low-income urban communities in the u.s. welcome. he worked closely with our california office. we're glad to have you here in washington. next, emanuel says, director for center of equitable growth and the morris cox professor of economics at the university of california berkeley. measuring changes in determining
how taxation affects income savings. his theoretical and sites are greatly enhancing our understanding of the relationship between income and tax policy, in particular, and reinvigorating the field of public economics. it is an honor to have you join us today. finally, my friend bill spriggs, assistant secretary policy at the u.s. department of labour. he has worked as an educator, researcher, advocate for working families and low income communities for over 25 years. we're pleased to have you here today. both as a representative of the administration and really a longtime expert an advocate on these matters. i want to begin by doing something that is unusual in washington, which is, let's start with the facts before opinion.
maybe we will set a new president and washington. maybe i'll start with you, emanuel. i described a little bit about what is happening over the past 30 years. where do we stand today with respect to distribution of income and equity in the economy? >> thank you, john. this summarizes most of what has happened in the united states. this chart shows to the fraction of total income went to the top 1% families of almost a century in the united states. the last part of the graph shows a dramatic increase in the share of total income going to the top 1% with less than 10% back in the late 1970's to a peak of 23.5% in 2007, just before the great recession.
what is striking in this graph is and come was also very high in the pre-great depression period. the second peak is just before the great depression. then you have the great depression, the new deal policies, world war ii and the u.s. was transformed into a society that was much more economic equality. that was associated with the very high growth level. in contrast, in the 1970's, growth and income concentration has increased dramatically. why is that relevant? the numbers here, the surge in incomes is so large that it forces us to reassess how we evaluate a macroeconomic success or macro economic growth. we often hear the u.s. is growing faster than continental
europe. that is true, but if you restrict yourself to the bottom 99%, exclude the top 1% i am showing, it is no longer the case that real income per family is growing faster in the u.s. than in continental europe. effectively, the top 1% here is capsuled over half the total economic growth and the income measure of that time. you have to divide by two to know what is happening to the vast majority of american families. >> bill, can you drill down a little bit on this from the perspective of the racial wage and wealth gaps in the country? that is an overall picture of what has happened in the u.s. economy, but take it down a level to the racial complexion that underlies that data. >> we had to be experts in
movement toward inequality toward equality. -- we had two big spurts. around world war two, and the 1960's with a civil war ax bridge both close the gap, but stalled. we have had sort of a persistent gap by gender, by race that is pretty much stayed the same in terms of wage gaps since the 1970's. of course, we have been plagued by this persistent unemployment gap where, for african- americans, it is typically two to one, and his bare-bank hispanic americans, 1.5 to 1. we have not seen those things close as much as we would up hoped. the gaps i'm speaking of after control for education. i'm not speaking of the movement or progress we have made because
of educational improvement, both in the latino and african- american community, or for women as well. so those things are in issue. the problem from a policy perspective is how to reach folks when you want to try and address something like the downturn the had, and kind of an oxymoron to say the bottom 60%, but the bottom 60% of families control about 20% of income. so when the bottom 60% controls 20% of income and a major fiscal policy tool is used taxes, well, they do not have the income to drive a major tax confusion. these problems then become very serious. >> was the recession and equal opportunity recession or has the
affects on wage growth and household wealth been concentrated itself at the bottom? >> on the wealth gap, more persistent gap even an income, we really have made no progress. we had a small bump up in homeownership for latinos and african-americans during the 1990's and into the housing boom. that has gone away. while all americans have lost equity in their homes, this has been far more severe for african-american and latino families where the foreclosure collapse, those neighborhoods have been hit severely. perhaps the more serious thing going for it is this persistent wealth gap. >> manual, thing for a little bit and reflect on what the country is going to look like
and what these trends looked like from the perspective both of equity and growth. we have dubbed this project project 2050 and probably thought about calling the project 2042 when the country's projected to be minority. that didee to sink. angela went over this in some detail, but with the country becoming more and more built with immigrants and racial minorities, what are these trends pretend for both growth and equity? >> i think it recalled "project tomorrow." by 2042, probably a few years before, will be at a majority minority nation. or as i like to think of it, all minority all the time. that means everyone will be a
minority. one thing the new census data suggests is a rapid growth has been in the latino and asian community. 43% growth in the latino community and 43% in the asian community between 2000-2010, about 11% of african-americans, 2% for whites. when you look at the youth coming on line, there was a 4.3 million decline in white children, those below the age of 18, 4.8 million increase in latinos, about 7 million increase in asian. what is driving that is immigration is people's perspective. but really, it has tapered down for migration. the recession had an impact and increased enforcement but also an impact for the long-term trends that were headed down as well. we're really dealing with second
and third generation population coming on line. it is a much younger population. angela pointed out to the gaps between the old and young. if the look of the median ages, for whites, it is 41. asians, 35. african-americans, 32. the team as, 27. a much younger population. -and latinos, 27. a much younger population. we need to make sure the work force is ready. the evidence suggests we are not. a lot of that has to do with the generational divide or disconnect that angela was talking about. angela and i have been talking quite a bit. in fact, she gave my entire talk. when i think about the future, i think of a 24-year-old latino musician, my son. i hope he has a future. generational divide really does have an impact.
when you look at the states in the united states that have the biggest gap demographically between old and young and you kind of line them out by who is the biggest gap, you find the level per-capita state capital spending, investment of the future, is the lowest. with the older generation, does not see themselves in the younger generation. investment is the lowest. if you look at which metropolitan area of the top 100 metropolitan areas in the united states has the biggest gap between the old and young demographically, it is phoenix. is it any wonder if they're having the kind of conflicts they're having around immigration and also around investment? healing the divide generational leap is really important. the very famous tea party sign, "keep your government hands off my medicare," it was looked at as sort of a joke. it was a signal to this in
regeneration, the older generation lifting of the drawbridge is just as the younger generation is arriving. the racial gaps have not closed much. about half of that is still provoke-and probably discrimination for african- americans. when the different strategies for different populations. -- we need the difference strategies for different populations. >> what about the growth capacity for the economy if we do not get these policies right? maybe all three of you speak to that. what is it going to mean if our human capital is under invested in an educational attainment follows the same patterns for the capacity of the economy to grow? >> i think that is why secretary so these has made such an effort that the training funds we have from the recovery going to make
sure we did everyone, that we trained everyone. when you look at that wealth gap between latinos and whites and african-americans and whites and you look at differences in child achievement, wealth is such a better predictor of the problems the child will face an even in come. it takes well to get a kid through college. it is not just income. so the real threat we have is bad -- when you look at half the next college generation is today, being under resource on the private side, and you think about what it takes to produce that college graduate, we look at the tip of the iceberg when we are looking at public expenditure. it is the private gap, the gap in the household where there is even more investment in the
child at the household level. so those gaps between what families can do and what we know needs to be done is a huge gap. it is important for us to raise because we looked at this as a bean counter exercise of what does the government spend, but what do we as a society spend on these children. then you see the gap is getting bigger. >> emanuel, from the perspective of macro growth economics, what happens if we have this changing demographic, under investment in human capital, what is the potential for the u.s. economy to grow? can it continue to put a big growth numbers in the context where it is human potential is kind of being under invested in? >> yes. >> what do we know? >> the me say a few words on
that. probably all of you have heard orthodox economic argument that any quality is good because it generates strong incentives to work and succeed, therefore, equalizing incomes might be detrimental to growth. that is true if you believe imperfect market. the issue is not the obstruction does not apply to the real world for a simple reason. john alluded to it, the markets are in perfect. the key idea is simple. if you're talented, but pork, that is, you do not have the wealth or family or background resources, he might not be able to get a good education or double up your business ideas because you cannot access credit
to borrow against your future growth prospects. it is this problem of credit market imperfection that makes inequality potentially very detrimental to growth. redistributing resources is done in large parts to the government that finances these high quality education can give a boost to economic growth. the evidence is disputed. i wanted to come back to the chart i'm showing. remember the simple fact, economic growth in u.s. was the highest during the timeframe where income concentration was at its lowest and where the u.s. was really expanding, especially on the education, and gi bill, and the other policies. >> there is an increasing body of evidence that has emerged
first on the developing world and recently from studies on america's much regions that suggest in fact more equitable society is to produce more rapid economic growth. in the developing world, the whole series of studies which basically made the argument that more equitable society invested more in basic education and lifted up human capital and also created the opportunity for people to feel like they may benefit from growth. as a result, would be more supportive of policies that would promote growth in the median voter would gain. with a body of evidence that has emerged from the developing world. recently, people have taken a look at this and america's metropolitan regions. we found regions that have less disparities in the distribution of income, regions making more progress on reducing poverty, regions making more progress on reducing racial segregation in fact produced more rapid economic growth, even if you
control for the effects of growth and reducing party itself. i know you're looking at me, a professor from the university of southern california. maybe he is making this up, right? do not believe me. the cleveland federal reserve did a study on 120 metropolitan midsize regions. they found the usual suspects predict economic growth. whether you have investor university, a number of things. they found more unequal regions, more racially segregated regions, regions that have higher levels of poverty concentration reduced or had reduced economic growth. this is something really emerging in the literature. i think it is a little like the way we had to shake our mind about the notion they're raising the minimum wage would cost a lot of employment. in fact, there's a big myth about equity and economic growth. if there's one thing to take away from the session, there is
the possibility to deal with equity and opportunity and a way that will promote economic growth. when i look at the rate charts, fantastic job of collecting data, i think to myself -- we became so unequal as a nation that one group of people was forced to speculate with their money while another group of people was forced to borrow just to keep their standard of living at a certain level or to buy that one last house before the american dream disappeared. we were so deregulated that we had derivatives for the wealthy and subprime mortgages for the lower incomes and middle income folks. we were so disconnected demographically that when the first group of people to lose their homes for black and latino home owners in stockton and riverside and las vegas, people said, that cannot happen to me. we were disconnected, deregulated and unequal.
until we make equity one of the central elements of our economic growth, have some reasonable regulation and really deal with the story of connecting us across communities and across generations, we really will not deal with the data that emanuel has so successfully documented. >> i am a lawyer and not an economist. i draw fans will connections from just a few evidence points. -- fanciful connections from just a few evidence points. [laughter] i want to come back to the observation that the highest datapoint inequity and u.s. economy occurred just before the crash. now we go to this next peak, just before the crash. your drawing some linkage between those two things, an
economy that does so distorted and the equity side that it actually fueled or put in accelerant on what was a problem. i wonder if you agree with them, the possibility to least explore? >> both the great depression of the 1929 and recession, the cause of both of those was a credit boom with a runaway finance. it is striking to also see those two things happened at times where finance was completely deregulated. actually, an important part of the new deal was to regulate a finance which we ushered an era of prosperity and when finance
started to become deregulated again in the 1980's, we observed a growing share of total profits and economic going to the financial sector, an increase in concentration that is a substantial part of that trend is due to the growth of the financial sector. and in an economic catastrophe. >> if you look at the asian financial crisis, you see similar run-up and income equality? >> typically, a credit boom will tend to concentrate in come. the financial sector is very concentrated. you can get enormous profits from leveraging and from expanding credits, yes. >> we seem to have no problem lecturing developing countries about the need to produce policies. maybe there is no answer to this question, but to reduce policies
that are going to do what manual describes, education, putting girls in schools and trying to produce a growth model that will benefit all their citizens. whitey imagine it is so difficult -- why do you imagine it is so difficult for people who are used to lecture in developing countries to adapt that and apply the same thinking methodology in the u.s.? >> >> what is good for the goose is not good for the gander. we do that. the columbia free trade agreement went very far in trying to make sure unions were protected in colombia. we lecture them quite a bit about why it is important to have freedom of association and free labor movements. >> [unintelligible] [laughter]
>> yes, i think there is that tendency and within the debate here in the u.s., the president push for the huge vision of getting this back to being number one in producing college graduates, making sure we're doing the investment to make that happen, making sure we're doing at the k-12 level which is a big challenge to get our public school systems to raise the ante themselves. so the right kind of investment will take place to lift them up. it is there, but it is the subject of great debate in the u.s. some people want to call it spending. we're spending too much when we make these investments, making the program program accessible to more children, making sure the grants cover the cost to
enter the college. that perspective of "spending" is the way you look at it, they are not your kids. you look at it as investment when is your child. as a parent, all of us think of it as an investment when we put our children through college. it is the irony that we all say the children are our future, but when it comes time, too often, americans think, it's ok. it stops being our future and our children. we have to raise ourselves to see that as investment and not as spending. >> at the beginning i brag a little bit about the clinton economic performance in terms of producing strong wage growth, strong job growth, strong economic growth, strong business investment.
you saw quintiles of the population growing at about the same rate, but when you apply the same rate against more income, you still get that big spike in run-up both in wealth and concentration at the top. i guess my question to the panel is is it enough to look toward in point-bank and put that is going to produce strong economic output for the middle class that is wage growth and some wealth, even if we are seeing that concentration continue at the top? or is the concentration leading to a bubble and a bust? >> what do you think? >> i think the only way you can remedy this income concentration is by very strong
policies. probably, the education sector is given the opportunity of getting a good education to all americans is central. so those government interventions will require spending. if you want to spend, you need to get the money through taxation. lemme talk on the tax side briefly. at least the increase in income concentration gives us an opportunity that is effectively a fiscal capacity double up at the top of distribution that could possibly happen to to try and implement policies that would be favorable to a more equitable growth. it used to be the case that people were saying the rich are rich, but there are not enough of them or they're not rich enough to make a big difference fiscally. that was probably true in the
1970's, but no longer true today after the surge in top income. to give you a statistic, the top 1% pace about 22% of their income in federal taxes, yet they pay 3% of gdp. with only a 22% tax rate, he raised 3% of gdp. you could crank up that number from 22% theoretically, say your to double it, which is an extreme policy, but a tax rate of 44%, it would raise three% extra of gdp. $4.50 trillion over a decade. those are numbers as big as the cuts described in the ryan plan. keep that in mind. the u.s. faces a fiscal imbalance. most of the economic growth has
gone to the top. if we do not see the trickle- down coming into the market to, the government has the opportunity to implemented by readjusting fiscal policy. a lot of the work i have done, do high taxes on the rich hurt the economy? we have good evidence of how you need to change the tax system to make sure actually the rich would end up in the higher taxes-and paying higher taxes. from pretty good evidence past tax changes, how the rich does not respond that matched the level of taxation compensation is really only a small part of it. >> what about on the investment side? we have been on a crusade, i
guess, to lower taxation on wealth and investment, state tax, capital gains differential, dividends differential. any real hard data on what the impact is with respect to investment? i mean, the theory is, if you drive rates down on investment income, then you get more investment and the economy will grow stronger. >> that is possibly true for businesses that are constrained, a business with great credit opportunity but cannot get funding so they have to use their profits to invest and grow slowly. definitely, you do not want to tax these. i think the solution to the problem is we should disconnect the taxes of businesses from the taxes of individuals. what you want to do is tax the rich, but not necessarily tax
businesses that are growing. the best way to do that, something u.s. has never done but other countries have, is have a corporate tax that is considered as a prepaid tax on future profits. and then credit back those that corporate tax to the profits are distributed to individuals. that we can play on the corporate side and give tax breaks to growing businesses, but make sure the profits when they officially reach the rich shareholders, you have a progressive tax. >> if i could talk about it from the reverse. one of the problems with trying to kickstart the economy with the recovery, any talk about equity, again, because the bottom 60% or 20% of income, it is hard to have a tax cut big enough that can really address those at the bottom, the bottom
60%. now, the recovery act achieved that. president obama engineered it so when you look at where the tax cuts went, about 40% of the benefits from the make work pay tax cuts went to those of the bottom 60%. but it is very hard if the end, so unequally distributed to stimulate the economy through tax cuts. it is not just on the growth side, but even the recovery side when you come to troubles. how do you balance it out when you look at what the clinton administration achieved by regularly expanding the and earned income tax credit, balancing the tax level at the higher and, and restoring productivity by putting -- you had a total system that became more aggressive and more equal. we're having something similar with our regional investment
clusters the president obama is using his own strategy in this administration. the other problem is the bottom 20% of americans account for less than 1% or a little over 1.5% family income. that means that even if they have the worst of times, almost a 10% loss in income, almost a month lost in wages, which now can afford, that means it is less than one-tenth of 1% of gdp. that is not even noticeable from the gdp perspective. when 20% of your country can be having unbelievable pain, but you're using a measure that says -- we are doing fine. then you have a real problem. that is part of the disconnect. >> i think you need to be thinking about -- emanuel is
focusing on what we need to do it right the as far as the tax policy, but also the impact on private investment. also, how come these are public investment in a way that is more equitable pretext distribution of income more opportunities? i think the investment in education are incredibly important. one of the things very, very important is investing in the community college system and tying into these regional clusters in ways we begin to work with the metropolitan regions, understand where the holes of growth are, and make the community college systems be generating the workers of both young workers that fit into that and young workers that can be retrained and moved through that in successful ways. the second thing we need to do on the public policy side is facilitate unionization, which is really important and changing the distribution of income. there is a lot of good evidence on union workers being more productive in part because they tend to be more loyal at work
and those kinds of things. one thing to do is think about the aspects of public policy that might also affect the pretext distribution of income. i think one of the big things we need to think about -- interesting in the conversation. usually when people talk about equity and try to affect distribution of income, the argument being made is somehow to put more money in the hands of lower income individuals there will spend more and stimulate the economy. that is a short-term thing. all of what we're talking about here is affecting the long term supply side of the economy by impacting incentives to work, by impacting how fair people think the system is, impacting the investments that will be there. these are long-term strategies and need to make this kind of an argument. >> great point. come back on the regional point of use cited the cleveland fed data. are those -- those are not
federal based policies that are affecting regions. maybe a little bit. r&d spending might be concentrated and academic communities of excellence, etc., what are governors, mayors, others to into actually address this question about creating a more equitable economic perspective or economic direction for their communities? what differentiates the good from the bad? >> an interesting thing that has emerged about the u.s. economy, increasingly common market of metropolitan regions in which there's a lot of heterogeneous performance and regional performance in clusters. i think you're seeing the best mayors and governors and even metropolitan planning organizations as they get into this helping to coordinate the
work force investment effort, to help tied together the community colleges with the regional economic clusters. begins to erode the divisions between cities and suburbs that lead to sprawl, separation, and under investment. there's one important thing. something i hinted at in the policylink paper. policylink's first big points in the paper that were done with is the idea of framing the conversation. you can say, my, god, that sounds were really big. but we have a new book coming out next year -- which you should buy. it is a little play on the notion that people think this problem will be solved by just growth. in fact, we need just growth. things that purposely inclusive. one thing we found that is used an approach to identify regions in the u.s. during a better job
of producing economic growth and sharing economic opportunity with wide swaths of the population. we found interestingly, those places -- and some more unusual like jacksonville, florida -- or places that had mechanisms that brought together people, could develop a shared understanding of their regional economic problems and some kind of sense of shared understanding about what the solutions may be. they may wind up difference. this may never support a living wage. but if you say it party is a problem and it could -- and the quality is damaging, you can share the understanding with the debate is about the method of how to address it weather than it is a problem at all. i encourage that refraining, bringing business into the room, understanding the needs of the market is an important way to begin to think about how we address this issue. we might be able to do this region by the region than we are
as a nation as a whole. as a nation as a whole, we are very polarized. people get together face-to- face, race to race, a place to place and realize when they under invest in each other, they cursing in the whole metropolitan region. >> i >> we have time for maybe a couple of questions from the audience. i will look out there. we have a microphone. go ahead. >> storm cunningham. i am wondering -- you have a great chart here demonstrating the relationship between economic growth and equity on the national level. does anyone have graphics at the metropolitan level? >> i wish i could just go like this. yes, we do, in a couple of books.
you may find them argues. what we try to do is you can take a look at the relationship between economic growth and equity and we try to do a little bit of simultaneous modeling of in it. really, this is a relationship that has probably changed over time. >> i am looking for my microphone. >> i guess -- john podesta touched on this, but i would like to get straight to the politics that we are experiencing. the wealth gap, the racial gap, it's all feeding the political
situation we have in this country with people not wanting to invest, thinking about it as expenditures and not as an investment. maybe the conversation really has to be at the regional level done. i would like all the view to talk a little bit about what is it that the policy community here in washington can do to try to change this conversation so that we can address any of these policy issues because at the moment we cannot do anything. >> i think we are doing some of that in some of our policy choices. the president has the agencies working across each other so we are pulling a vision so people in our local community can respond to.
we are doing the down payment now of $500 million out to community colleges to major community colleges are understanding the needs to place workers and understand the need with the business community. it is a way to spur a different conversation to get people to seek federal dollars flow in a different way. get the conversation going and getting people to see federal dollars in a different way than they see today. >> first, thanks for that very easy question. i guess the thing i would end it is -- i do think we play a lot of defense rather than -- i would not call it off and, but putting out our own story and
framing a narrative. number one, how inequality has been dead for -- has been bad for in the quality growth. the second thing is the politics of anger versus of the politics of the aspiration. the tea party has done very well at the politics of anger because it is appealing to a much older demographic who feel they are losing america. they feel like they are losing their place, losing america. the politics of anger has really worked for them.
the reason why that doesn't quite work -- if you go to this young regeneration and do polling, they are really optimistic. not a lot of reason to be, but they are really optimistic about our country, the fact that we can solve our problems and moved ahead. we are locked in because in order to motivate his constituency we need to be practicing the politics of aspiration. the tit-for-tat in the politics of washington does not move us as for forward with this demographic that is going to be really increasingly important in the future. to be a part of the middle class, to see the investment in college to help them get ahead. i think we will shortchange ourselves if we moved too quickly to anger.
>> linda harris. apart from the real need to having these dialogues and bringing the conversation to get there, during the time when you saw the more equitable distribution was a time when there was much more work in the area of affirmative action and enforcement of eeoc and a link of economic development. are there any aspects of the role that can be played in any of those are rina's as we move into this need for equity? >> i think there is. i think when you look at the
president having reinvigorated the equal employment commission, the efforts on gender equality, i think people understand that the divides have to be crossed in what we are doing. the department of labor has been reinvigorated so we can make things as equitable as we can. that discussion needs to be part of what we are doing because our future work force is right now. that work force is graduating this year. it looks very different. we have to be able to reach all of them. >> in the worker was talking about earlier, one of the things that perhaps should not have been surprising in our case study -- we are totaled nerds.
-- total nerds. one was the size of the black middle class. when we thought about it, yes, that is a population that has interest in economic growth but a memory and history to a much more disenfranchised community. i think that is part of the era that you are talking about, in which people were achieving more positions with a very close connection to communities and making sure those things come forward for everybody else. are heartened that we seeing latino generations bring up these important elements of more growth.
>> what about the direct input to support income for low income workers? refundable child credit -- do we know anything about the effects of that? i think we certainly know the effects on individual household, but what about the effects in the economy? to try to basically it raised wages at the bottom for the most low-wage workers. what is the effect on the economy overall? >> -when you look at this recovery, -- i think when you look at this recovery, raising the benefit size and for all workers by $25, the expansion of
access to food stamps meant that for the first time we have pumped enough money so that the record black unemployment rate stays at double at the unemployment rate. so, when you look at the 1980's when the white unemployment rate reached a 10% and the black unemployment rate reached 20%, it never reached 20 percent this time because the communities remained more viable. >> on the minimum wage, that is a great example. careful work has shown that the effects are much more complex because increasing the minimum wage reduces drastically
turnover as workers are more motivated to seek those jobs and in the end can be good for productivity. i would say that we really need to look at all the policies that have been implemented, study them carefully, and figure out with research what works and what does not work to have a tool box to get the best possible policies promoting growth and equity. >> you get a last question. >> hi. between john's question about what the local government can do in your observation about the rich got derivatives and the poor got subprime mortgages, the data shows that back in 2008 when gas prices spiked, foreclosures started six months to nine months later. we can expect to see that again
as we are approaching a $5 gas rate. i wonder if maybe part of the solution is not also to increase space efficiency and that is more doable on the metropolitan level. you cannot do it top-down. steadying the recovery act, those regions that spend money on mass transit created twice as many jobs $4 million spent using the same database as those who spend their money on roads and highways. madrid by wonder if that is not part of the solution, to make -- i wonder if that is not part of the solution, to make spatial efficiency part of the solution. gas price rises are not theoretical. >> i think that is really a
great point and something i read -- i had written down is a policy suggestion for climate change reasons, but also for the spatial efficiency that you are talking about, the way in which people sprawled out in suburbs. in order to deal with that, we will have to deal with the disconnection. there is some degree of the other either by race or by class. it has to do with the failure of public schools which induces people to move as well. if you think about it in the quality as a u-shaped curve, if you have too much a quality, you smother all the incentives. -- if you have too much the
you smother all of the incentives. >> well, i think this was a tremendous example of the fact that washington -- one of the answers to changing the conversation really is the kind of work that three people up here are doing to try to actually study and a breakdown methodology of what passes in fought today and what inputs are going to produce the best outcomes for the middle-class and the stronger growth models. in keeping with the italian- american moderators for this session, i am about to turn things over to janice nittoli to
take it up with the second panel. please join me in taking this panel. -- in thanking this panel. [applause] >> we are going to do a little cleaning of the copy -- of the coffee cups. i guess i would say from the cheap seats back there, we had a sobering, stimulating, clear- eyed conversation about how the one end of this curve, this extreme inequality is bad economics, bad for democracy,
and if you can talk in conversation and be understood by talking about the bottom 50%, then there is something wrong about the american dream. we talked a little bit about tax policy, what we could do about the way in public investment. we are going to talk more about those things. also, very importantly, how do you engage a larger whole in this conversation, particularly if you have 1% of the population enjoying close to a quarter, 23.5%, of the income. we have work to do to have a common conversation about this. i am going to take the pleasure in telling about the four people with whom we will have this conversation. the first is someone you have been turning to twice a week
since 1993 in the new york times. bob herbert has been writing about social issues and politics. since then, in march, he wrote his final column for the times which had to set a record for the world's most forward column. he is not retiring in any sense of the word. we were joking that bob is continuing and the battle. he is just changing uniforms. he is working on a book and i hope he will tell us more about it shortly. we are also joined by mariko chang next to bob.
she is an expert analysts and a very skilled communicator about the wealth gap in this country, particularly women compared to those other people, and women of color compared to men and other women. her book says it all. it is called "shortchanged." next, denise fairchild, president of emerald cities. denise pulls together 30 years of experience in helping low- income communities really reach their potential in terms of enterprise development, economic growth, fair housing, both in this country and internationally. and then, lastly, we are joined
by don chen who worked at the ford foundation. he focused on public transit, affordable housing, community and economic development, but he learned all of those ingredients and how they come together by doing it. don is the found the inspiration in the leader for smart growth in america. that is our panel. i am going to take a seat over here. i am going to start, bob, by asking you. the first panel talked about this generational divide. and a kind of collected, civil lack of empathy. if we can not connect, how the heck are we going to dig out of
this? >> we will not dig out of its. that is one of the biggest messages i have been trying to spread going around the country. it strikes me that the u.s. is in a lot deeper trouble than you might get looking at mainstream media or listening to the politicians. we hear all this talk -- we have been talking today about the extreme levels of economic inequality. but when you look at what is going on in washington, it seems like we are moving in the wrong direction. we hear all of this stuff about budget deficits. if you want to deal seriously with budget deficits, you do that when you have taken tax increases of the table or even amongst the democrats talking about modest tax increases. you have that on the one hand. on the other, we are fighting
these very debilitating wars. we cannot raise taxes and you are going to tell me we are going to bring down the budget deficit. that is not going to happen. all the politicians will tell you with a straight face that their top priorities are jobs, jobs, jobs. you have austerity on the one hand and you are going to create jobs on the other? that is not going to happen. they are going to cost jobs. the first thing we need to do if we are serious about the problems facing the country, i think, is to get the story out there to the american people, one, about how serious the problems are, and, two, straight talk about the proper ways to deal with these problems. to answer your question about getting together, it just seems
to me that one of the biggest problems is that we have followed this idea of the extremes of individual responsibility to the point where everybody is out there on their own and they are not working collectively toward those things that would help individual americans in the country as a whole. what i would like to see it is more and more people talking about the importance of the civil engagement, people coming together, alliances between organizations of similar mines and have compatible roles and that sort of thing. if there was a simple slogan or a message that i would like to get out today it is that we are all in this together. the problem is deeper than we think, and we are not going to get out of it unless we figure out a way for all of us to pull
together. >> one of the traditional ways in this country that we get up and out and build better futures is through education. one thing that came through if you do nothly is have the money, you cannot get the education these days. >> it is really a pleasure to be here today. i will be talking about the women's wealth gap. with respect to education, this really hits home because my oldest daughter is a senior heading off to college at some unknown place, but she will know by may 1. in terms of economics that is, we are used to thinking about how well people are doing economically in terms of income, wages, or salary. however, wealth is what really matters especially in times like
these in which people lose access to their incomes. wealthier is net worth or the value of your assets minus your debt. it would include things like the money you have in your savings accounts and your real-estate or the businesses that you own a. get on the other hand would be a mortgage, credit-card debt, or any loans that you have it. we have heard a lot about the staggering racial wealth gap. for every dollar of wealth owned by the typical white family, the typical family of coolor owns only 16 cents. first, i want to address the misperception which is that we do not need to worry so much about the women's wealth gap because after all don't most men and women to marry and pull together resources?
the pollen of resources is not necessarily the way that things of resourcesllinulling is not necessarily the way that things go. the women's wealth gap is still important because of various reasons. half of all households are not married households. second, any financial protection offered by a marriage disappears for many women because half of all marriages end in divorce. widowhood is really a time for economic downturn for many. one in five of which goes live in poverty. women actually live longer than men on average survey need more wells, not less wealth, to
support themselves in retirement. i used data from the 2007 survey of consumer finances, the data that is sponsored by the federal reserve board. this data was collected prior to the severe economic downturn, so this actually paints a rosier picture than what the current situation is likely to be. the general patterns are still likely to hold. just a couple of notes about racial groups, i could look in detail for black and african americans, but other racial groups were combined in a single category because of sample size issues so i will not be breaking news out separately to date. i have a need chart. this shows the median wealth by household size and gender. married and co-habiting couples
are in green. single include people who were never married, divorced, widowed, but are not still have dictating. right away, married and cohabiting couples are by far the wealthiest. there are many reasons to that. high income people are more likely to get married. what to want to put your attention to today is the wealth gap between men and women. the typical single man has just over $31,000 of wealth, whereas the median wealth for a single woman is about $16,000. however, we see even more staggering statistics when we break things down by race. the typical single black man has about $8,000 in wealth, while
the typical single black woman has about $100. the numbers for hispanics are similar. if we convert this to a ratio, we see that single black and hispanic women have about a penny of wealth for every dollar of wealth that is owned by their same race counterparts. these are absolutely staggering statistics. now, women of all races experience a motherhood at wells penalty, but you can see here that the penalty is much greater for women of color than white women. black and hispanic women with children under the age of 18 have a median wealth of zero. in contrast, white women with children under 18 have a meeting
was close to $8,000. -- have a median wealth close to $8,000. even though income is important, we need to shift our attention to wealth. even if men and women have the same income, there would still be a wealth gap between women and men. that is for two reasons. first, women are more likely to have custody of children, so as a custodial parent, they bear a larger financial responsibility so even with the same income their income has to go farther to feed more people. also, because women, especially of color, are less likely to have access to the wealth escalator. it consists of a variety of mechanisms to help people translate their income to a
much faster rate. benefits, favorable tax code, and a viable government benefits. if you have access to these things, your income is going to go a lot further. i am not going to go over each of these mechanisms in detail because i know i am severely time limited, but i want to give you an example of a fringe benefits, the types of things that you would be lucky enough to receive from your employer. things such as employer- sponsored retirement accounts, insurance, that type of thing. for us who are lucky enough to receive these benefits, they can build our wealth in one of two ways. one is directly, things like employer-matched retirement savings.
there are also in direct effects. if you have things provided by your employer that you would have to pay for yourself, that leaves you more money left over to save and invest. the problem here is not that some people do not have access to these things. women and people of color are less likely to have access because of the kinds of jobs that they work in it. they are more likely to work in the service sector, the least likely of all to provide fringe benefits to their employees. also, they are more likely to work part-time, and part-time employees are often ineligible for these types of benefits. people wonder what can be done about this. i will outline some suggestions, things that are actually in place now that can be taken at different levels.
first, thinking about policies that will help people build wealth and not income, we have to think about ways for them to build assets. a successful strategy thus far has been individual development accounts, matched savings accounts, so for every dollar that people save, they will receive a match of a dollar or $2. these moneys can be used for higher education, to start a business, or typically also to buy your first home. however, we also need to give people access to the fringe benefit that are often distributed through employment, things like paid sick days. since like the healthy families act is really important for insuring that people have access to those types of benefits. the tax code, something that i have not talked about yet, is important by helping to
redistribute money, things like the child tax credit and the dependent care tax credit should be made refundable because currently low income women are least likely to benefit from them. to conclude, as the panelists from the first group have pointed out, the wealth gap in the united states is detrimental to our nation's future. today, the top 5% of income earners owned more wealth than the bottom 95% of the bottom population. while policies to improve income are absolutely critical, they alone are insufficient. a decent salary guarantees the you can pay your bills today. wealth and guarantees that you can pay your bills tomorrow and for generations to come. i look forward to working with all of you as we continue to bring about a more equitable tutor for all americans and for
the nation. >> we will talk more about this conversation about helping individuals get a leg up. i want to turn now to thinking about that from a community perspective. regions of this country that have a more equitable economic structure also are faster producers of economic growth. emerald cities is behind a lot of that. what does that look like as it all comes together? >> first, those of you who may not know, emerald cities is a collaborative of major national organizations representing a coalition of labor, organizations, and our mission is to transform america and to
make it more equitable. how do we transfer metropolitan regions from a sprawl, fossil fuel economy to a clean energy economy? and do it in a way that is faster, at scale, and that will fundamentally change the shape of what this regional economy looks like? there are probably two things that keep me up that night. the first thing is that we are in a very profound state of america, where there are structural changes taking place in our regional economy. the impact of this need to be recognized within other economic transitions that have occurred. how we have moved from an industrial to a suburban economy is where we are right now in terms of moving from a suburban
sprawl economy to a green economy. the kinds of transitions that the taken place in each of those phases have changed our life styles, our values, our land uses, our infrastructure. from their railroads to the agrarian era, the highways of the suburban communities, to the information highway and the information economy. these infrastructures are taking place. and the educational system is important in the changes and transitions that took place as well as the financial system. every major institution in the system and infrastructure in the united states is in transition as we move to this new economy. it is not a question of if it is going to happen. the green economy is happening.
and the fact that these system changes are taking place are pretty awesome and pretty profound. it means our coalition is in engaged in how to make certain those systems work well for communities that of been left out of the mainstream in the past. the second issue that i worry about is when you look at those prior economic eras that we were in, they were considerable in equity. it is very clear that the agrarian economy grew out of slavery and indentured servants. it is clear that there were considerable inequities in the workplace standards that did not exist before we had a labor unions. it is very clear that the suburban economy grew because there were certain people who could not live in a suburb. how do we make certain that this new green economy is in fact
able to support a different kind of society? there are three things that we are working on that were in the paper produced by policylink. we are refraining the conversation. --reframing the conversation. what is the problem? is there a problem? how do we fix it? that is the most challenging but probably the most rewarding work that we are doing, to really begin to figure out how we open up those labor unions to lower income communities, how the business community engages with labor unions and except the fact that we have to rebuild the middle class and pay them decent wages to support families to make sure women get access to these non-traditional careers.
how does the government engage with the community? we are in the compensation and we are doing it at the local level. if we don't have those conversations, we are reproducing the inequities of the past. if we think we can create jobs and wheat will not reproduce the institutional, systematic barriers, then we are missing the boat and it is not going to be any different. we are addressing the issues of policy and making sure people have access to the skills and careers in this new green economy. the investment in developing college and a career pathways into this new economy is a critical part of the work that emerald cities has embraced. how are we making certain that
we are in listing young people out of the communities in which they live and placing them in the pathway of the future? in 10 or 15 years, i am out of here. it is going to be the work of a green -- it is going to be a place where they can have a natural environment and a future. the community college is the place that brings the nexus of bringing that altogether. it is a place where we are doing the remedial work of k-12 because of those systems have not worked. it is providing career technical information so people can get the skills to support industry and then ultimately the place where we can transfer people into higher education and create academic pathways. i am concerned that we are
focused so strictly on the modification of education, the development of the worker and recognizing that we are more than economic actors. it is my hope that we talk about community colleges, as we develop the work force of the future, we are also building the conversation, the leadership, and the kind of social engagement that is needed, the civil engagement that is needed to really address questions. i taught in community colleges for 15 years, and i am very clear that this is where communities have been. i have young people in my classrooms with the professional folks who are trying to get reskilled. we have had the conversation
with black, brown, asian- americans, all in this conversation about what is a community. what is equity? we are preparing the future not only in terms of technical skills but in terms of leadership skills as well. if there is one good thing, and i will leave on this note, that budget recognized a week ago, the academic senate of the community colleges in california passed the resolution to increase training and democracy at the community colleges in california. it is the place where we need to do and be to make certain we are creating a new future. the young people and people of color need to be a part of that future. >> don, i want to ask you because you are a practitioner
and a student of these regional economies and these metropolitan of economies that are making this work. the public infrastructure investments fit or do not fit with private commerce. what should we be looking for? what are the pieces that should be making it work? what should we avoid? >> i think implementation is absolutely critical. i want to commend the center for american progress for bringing this topic to our attention. i want to add a dimension to a lot of the points that the been raised. if you look at this slide, it is critically important to understand the dimensions here and critically important how it plays out by geography. if you look at all these barriers, how does it look among the different types of suburbs. the findings are actually quite
startling. we find that, thanks to a set of research that is coming out now , we have many more people in poverty in the suburbs than we have in the cities of america. we also have an increasing spread of low income people into suburban locations. one of the concurrent trends is we are seeing older suburbs looking at a lot more like cities in terms of their demographics, in terms of their levels of poverty and those types of things. on top of that, we have what some call a re-segregation of our public school system. it is an important thing to think about as we leave the conference room and go out into the real world and look at how this affects people where they live. regarding your question, i think
one of the things that is so important in terms of indicating a multitude of players is encouraging all of us to refrain the where we argue about these things. there is so much research and evidence related to this idea that equity is a superior growth model. most of what we fear is about the moral frame. we focus on these things, mainly arguing on points of fairness. those are critically important themes that resonate with the american public's. what also resonates with the american public are those stronger economic arguments that make the case not just to the macro-level policy makers better
thinking about national policies but also people who are the implement years of what you might call economic forces at the local levels, businesses, people who are business owners, and things like that. it is hard to make the shift to really talk about affordable housing, not just in terms of fairness, but in terms of economic advantage. i think we can make some progress. i will keep you one example. there is a wonderful group in chicago called [inaudible] [laughter] ok.
there is a group called the metropolitan planning council. the club consists of business leaders, the biggest and most into winter business leaders in chicago. they started collaborating on housing. we really need all hands on deck to approach this set of issues. it is a direct benefit to their employees. there is, in fact, a program in which takes advantage of tax credits that were passed by the illinois legislature and in naples employers to provide rental assistance, counseling to their employees of all different levels, whether it is the low wage workers to the higher wage workers so that they can have one more benefit so the human- resources department can actually do a better job of attracting and retaining the
talents that they work so hard to get. this is very successful. it is represented not just by a great collaboration, but in illinois, the employers have been advocates for affordable housing programs in general. it is generated this broader constituency to support these programs. i think we should not stop there. in honor of earth day today, there are a lot of environmentalists who see a lot of intersections between the quest for regional equity as is superior growth model and environmental protection. there is a lot of potential there. i am going to touch on a couple of other things. if we were serious about implementing equity as a superior growth model, what would it look like?
another example is in the transportation sector. at the brookings institution is getting ready to release a landmark study on a transit accessibility in the united states which is coming out in a few weeks. it is important to have a picture of how accessible different readers are in terms of public transportation for those who rely on it. it tends to be working women, elderly people, or those who are unable to drive a car. it is a very large portion of the working class. what they found is there is a tremendous variation between metro's that have robust services and those that do not. what they are going to look into over the next several years based on this data is to see if there are relationships between labor supply, issues of unemployment.
is it just too time consuming for people to commute three hours or two hours to get to a job to make minimum wage? in terms of what we have of soared from stories are around us, we think there is probably that is the case. finally, if our transportation policies really were focused on increasing transit access, which would try to build that into performance measures by which we decide on how those resources get allocated. right now, the administration is considering the release of a bill for transportation reauthorization which we hear has a much bigger increase in public transit funding. i hope they also focused on insuring those connections for working people are prioritized in the performance-driven formulas.
>> thanks, don. i want to ask a question of the panel. a lot of what we have been talking about is the need to have a conversation in common. it seems like it becomes a contest between the side that is the most organized gets to say the most. in this country, more recently with industrial labor unions, that was one way we formed a common base of conversation. on the other hand, we are talking about a new a economy, a new order of business. do we need to rethink how we come together? is the community college the new shop floor? is it somewhere else? how can we come together to have a conversation so it is more than a contest? >> i think that we need new and
more energetic leadership battle all levels among people who are concerned about these problems. you know, i think these issues have to revolving around access to employment. to me, that is the cornerstone in this country. if people are unable to work at jobs that provide a reasonable living wage, then the bottom falls out of the whole thing and the conversation is not worth having. it seems to me that you have to think in terms of employment and then figure out ways to get people who are concerned about these issues better organized. that is the way you get your story out and the attention of the media. that is how you bring pressure on the those in washington. they talk about how the right and the corporations and the wealthy -- they understood the
importance o organization and deliver to came from it decade ago and they have been using that leverage for all this time. we are far behind the curve but we better get started with this very dire conversation. i think organization is critically important, but we have to keep in mind the importance of employment to the way of life. >> i do think we need the re- education of america. we have to think about what does it mean to be equitable and what are the racial tensions. the we have to engage the young people in redefining what this new economy looks like and what this new society looks like. i do believe that i see the idealism, the activism, the
hopes and dreams of young folks at the earliest age, k-12. they are really starting to grapple with what am i inherited at the community college level. i see it in places where there is more diversity, where there are people of different races coming together and battling through the conversations. it is the platform for change. >> most of my ideas -- a professor wrote a book about organizing and building power at the regional level. the fund a little idea is there is a new type of organizing that is happening in a lot of parts of this country. really regional organizing in
which a diverse set of players, private sector, environmentalists, social justice, housing, and other activists are banding together to build more power in a coordinated fashion to emphasize that we have a shared destiny with all of us. without that organizing, we really cannot take collective action to improve the system. >> i think there can be an over- emphasis of the idea that you can get the word out in some kind of compelling way that you will get the proper response, that people will do the right thing. i do not believe that. i also think that while we need to try to pull together, which is my main message here, and that you need to focus on employment, education, and these other matters that are so important, you have to get the word to people that they have to fight for their own interests.
the media does not cover poor people anymore. we have to figure out a way to get poor people to fight for their own interest. black and other minorities need to be out there fighting for their interests. women getting the short end of the stake need to be out there fighting. that is how you got the civil rights movement, the labor movement, the gay-rights movement. we have to convey the idea that you really need to fight aggressively in a sustained way for your own interests. when people are doing that, you coordinate those efforts. that is the organization that we want. i agree that this is the right thing to do. >> if we say it, they will come. >> we have to have the right message but then we need to leverage behind that message.
>> the paper talked about having folks on commission and in these policy leadership roles so we know how dollars are allocated so infrastructure investments are going to work for people of color. the educational system will work for folks who have been under- educated. all the changes taking place require policy level decision makers to impact this in a way that will have the scale and change. >> democracy is a muscle. if you do not use it, it does not get stronger. any questions in the audience? dom has the microphone. we have another microphone.
>> thank you very much. i work for the u.s. environmental protection agency. how do we move beyond the ebb and flow composition of issues with equitable and development? it is profitable. banks have unasked $2 billion in assets focusing on capitalization in communities that were under-resources. even with conversations about equity, sometimes, the use of the term -- how we move beyond this and been " of the dialogue around issues of equity? thank you. >> i think part of the challenge is that our media cycle ebbs and
flows depending on what is happening. we are undergoing a demographic change that is going to accelerate as we move into the future. this is an opportunity for us to refrain some of the issues that we are discussing. practically every day, i see it lawmakers get up there and say we are doing this for our children, our children's children. what if we make sure that everybody in the world understands that in america and our children's children are a majority of color? then it is an opportunity to rethink the performance of what we have been able to provide. something like six out of 10 african american, latino, and native american graduate from high school. six out of 10. they are going to form the work
force of the next couple of generations. we will not be well served if that is the case. i think that will help us avoid some of those ebbs and flows. >> you have to give -- you have to get past the conversation. it is important at some point to stoppeople need to be in the committee. if you want to help our people, you need to be out there with poor people organizing people. someone mentioned the importance of labor unions, which are so on fashionable. the fact that they are on fashionable -- unfashionable. if we want the schools to improve, we need to get out
there and do whatever is necessary to get the schools in the better shape and to get the kids to apply themselves a little more and to get parents a little more involved and to fight against the forces -- the policy forces that would leave us with a deteriorating school system. it is important to get beyond the school system. >> it is important to do this work at a regional level. we are so divided at a national level that maybe we can get traction regionally. we have been working in cities where youth bills and service corps are working with the trade unions on how to develop a career college pathway. how to make sure we are retrofitting all of the buildings in that reaching -- in that region.
we are building a pipeline for folks coming out of these committees to get into apprenticeship programs to get their careers going over. these systems are being de constructed and reformulated. >> another way to combat the act and flow is to have each group -- ebb and flow is to have each group work for their issue. maybe another issue is in that has another overlapping issue with the trade unions. they can help bring discussions and topics that might be out of fashion. it is important for us to realize that so many interest groups have so much in common that they should be banding
together and supporting each other even when their particular topic is out of fashion. >> question on the left. gentleman here. >> i am dan martin with conservation international. the access to employment is a key variable. employment keeps moving. and i know how robust the transportation system is in chicago. sears and roebuck moved to campus -- a remote campus. jobs moved to tennessee because
of the right to work laws and attitudes toward unions. how do you imagine coming to grips with that kind of mobility of employment and how people seeking employment without the resources can respond? >> we have seen the de of space centralization -- de centralization of employment. we have the majority of jobs in suburban locations. the one glimmer of hope is that leading businesses are finding that that may not be the right to growth model for them. sears has moved back to chicago. they have some of this is still in the suburbs, but they have
come back to chicago en force. business have realized -- businesses have realized that there is no substitute for face- to-face contact. that said, it is true that the forces are still some difficult -- centrifical. we are about to see some significant changes in that. there is a recognition that so development is not a winning economic model. there is an effort to concentrate those efforts to gather so that our regions can
drive. >> links between community colleges and employers is critical. employers are likely to stay if they have the workers that they need, if they find they are growing. there is community-based support for the workplace where people are well trained. we need to forge more links between the community level and systems of education and employers. with that kind of partnership, jobs are more likely to stay where they are located. >> we have time for one more question. in the back. we will take a question from the bleachers. >> hi.
the previous panel talked about the importance of the need to rebuild the middle class. and you talked about the importance of community colleges. our headlines are full every day of people who have graduated from college and cannot find a job. the chart that manuel showed that the. of prosperity with well-paid jobs has disappeared. where do you see the force of well-paid middle class jobs reimmerging? are well-paid sector's going to unionize? isn't going to come from new technology? where do we get those jobs from? >> all workers should be
unionized so they can get higher pay and better benefits and that sort of thing. i am a big believer in figuring out a way in this country to rebuild the national infrastructure. that is the thing that forms the platform. it is a source of new and good jobs almost immediately. that is what creates a pratt -- created platform for the new industries going forward. when you have big initiatives like that, there are benefits that come along that you never imagined. when you are in the planning stages for it, you cannot identify or quantify what those benefits are. we know the of the structure is deteriorated in this country. we know it needs to be rebuilt. we know that the longer you wait, the more expensive it is going to be. we need to get started on that sort of thing right now. in a broader sense, this is
where i think the conversation is important, we need to get the word out about how serious the crisis in the employment is, what it has already done to the middle-class and what it is likely to continue to do going forward. we need to pay much more attention in terms of policy makers and others about how we can begin to reconstitute a middle-class. the basis for that is the jobs going forward. >> i agree. [laughter] >> amen. if you have not, take a good look at the policy link
former news anchor tom brokaw and vice president joe biden on bob dole. >> this weekend on american history television on c-span 3, an artist takes us back to the 19th century white house. and the constitutional effect of the election of 1800's. get the complete weekend schedule at c-span.org/history. >> this weekend on book tv on c- span 2, paul and julia child's
career during world war ii. also this weekend, sarah vowell examines the americanization of hawaii. find the complete schedule at booktv.org. >> next tuesday marked the 20th anniversary of the chernobyl nuclear plant disaster in what was the soviet republic of the ukraine. it is considered the worst nuclear disaster in history. there was a forum looking at the history and its short and long term effects of the environment and public health. this is about two hours.
with a panel called "lessons on chernobyl." this is a unique opportunity to effect on the events at the chernobyl power plant in 1986. we have to think about how to prevent such catastrophes from happening in the future. recent tragic events in japan, earthquake and tsunami and then destruction of nuclear power unit at fukushima, called for reredoubled -- redoubled efforts regarding nuclear safety.
i am convinced that all of you have been following news about how to use our nuclear energy. on behalf of the ukraine, i would like to express my deep gratitude to all nations participating in this important event, or their support of the initiative of the president of ukraine. we were able to secure an unprecedented amount of 51 to 50 million euro - 550 million euro.
more money is on the way to reach the goal of 750 million zero. -- million euro. i want to thank the united states government, which demonstrated its leadership in the financing a nuclear safety account. united states already provided more than $240 million and recently pledged new funding of $123 million. we praise the active role of president obama in working side- by-side to get necessary financing for the chernobyl
project. as president obama pointed out in recent statements, " cooperation between ukraine and the united states has made it possible for nuclear safety in the region and throughout the world." chernobyl remains a significant part of ukraine's budget. $50 billion was raised to combat the effects of the worst man- made disaster. allow me, on behalf of the embassy, to thank our partners
or making this happen and for their tireless efforts in sharing the message about chernobyl. the future of mankind without nuclear energy is not enforceable. at this conference, we will be able to learn from the lessons of the past and seek answers for the future of state and effective nuclear energy. i wish you a productive discussion. let me assure you that the embassy will always welcome friends of the ukraine on this and many other occasions. thank you for your attention. i am expressing my deep gratitude to paul walker or his efforts in organizing this conference. let me give him the floor for
his statement. thank you. [applause] >> thank you very much. and thank you all for coming today. let me provide a welcome on behalf of global green u.s.a. this event is on a serious subject, the meltdown in the ukraine 25 years ago this month. let me say a few things about global green. global green is the international affiliate of green cross. it was founded by mchale gorbachev in 1993. we are a nonprofit -- it was
gorbachev in 1993. i'll work involves projects at all levels, local, regional, national, and international. we have been involved in green building and building schools in louisiana since hurricane katrina. we are involved in the recycling of waste. we have been deeply involved in the safe and sound demille tori's asian -- demilitariz
ation. the security and sustainability program is managed out of our washington, d.c. office. today's program commemorating the 1986 global catastrophe is part of our program. we have organized five major conferences in moscow, street petersburg, russia on energy and security -- moscow, street petersburg florida -- street petersburg, russia on energy and security. -- st. petersburg, russia
on energy and security. this program is the third in a serious we are organizing -- in a series we are organizing on nuclear power and non- proliferation to understand nuclear power. our first events covered uranium mining and russian perspectives on chernobyl. one of our speakers spoke a couple of weeks ago at our offices. that can be found on our website. in the coming months, we will cover uranium enrichment. , the economics of nuclear
power and risk assessment. as president gorbachev, still our founder and chairman emeritus has written -- there are copies of this handed out to everybody. the acid in the ukraine was one of the worst man-made disasters -- the accident in the ukraine was one of the worst man-made disasters in nuclear history. there are specific lessons for the further development of nuclear power." i would urge all of you to read the whole text of his article, which is available here and on the website. our affiliate in switzerland has just published a study of long- term consequences chernobyl.
the disaster led to the acute and chronic stress of people living around the site. you can find this on the website. this study was released yesterday in german and english. little did we know when we planned this event, which started a couple of months ago, that we would face another nuclear power crisis in japan. we are 300 months after the chernobyl disaster and we are still facing long-term serious consequences today. we are only 40 days after the march 11 earthquake and tsunami and resulting nuclear catastrophe in fukushima. if you up all recent recovery efforts in japan, you know that the current estimates for the
the team to vichy -- estimates willhe fukushima cie sclean up take years. i would be remiss if i did not express our sincere condolences to the tens of thousands of victims in the ukraine, russia, europe, japan. i hope today's events will provide help and optimism that we will never have to face another crisis like bees to. in order to -- have to face another crisis like these two. we are fortunate to have many experts in the audience today.
i urge you to participate and ask questions and encourage discussion. with that, thank you again, and let us begin the first panel. i would ask that our first four panelists come up and we will get going. >> do you want us to hold the central microphone for you? >> let me first introduce our four panelists here today.
first is the president of ieer. he holds a ph.d. from the university of california at berkeley. he has worked on a weapons production testing and nuclear waste. most recently, he has co-a 3 uthored a book. next is dr. jeffrey patterson. he as a professor in the department of family medicine at the university of wisconsin in madison wisconsin. he is an active position for social responsibility. he visited chernobyl and the sites of nuclear testing and nuclear weapons in the former
soviet union and has studied the effects of radiation and sustainable means of on media rating climate change. -- ameliorating climate change. next is dr. sherman. she is a specialist on internal medicine and toxicology. she writes for the popular press to provide information for the concerned public. she concluded the translation and editing of the book on chernobyl. it was published by the new york academy of sciences in 2009. to my far right and your far
left is natalia. we have met many times. she is a prominent leader in human rights and anti-nuclear movements in russia. through her work in regional columns, she made public the victims affected by the first plutonium used in russia. she was involved in the construction of a plutonium storage facility about 15 years ago. a member of the supreme environmental council from 1997-2006, she organized a broad
public case for discussion on radioactive waste issues. with that, i will turn the program over. >> thank you very much. thank you for inviting me. i am pleased to be your on the anniversary of a somber occasion. after chernobyl, it was often said in the west that the same thing could not happen here. by the west, i mean other nations including japan. it was not explained why it cannot happen here. it was supposed to be safer. that was the soviet union.
happened there and it cannot happen here. i used to remind people that the same accident sequences could not happen here because that was a different type of reactor. but the same scale of consequences could certainly happen here. tragically, we do not know the scale of the consequences get a be fukushima tragedy. but we know it is far worse than any nuclear reactor accident in the west and much more comparable in scale to chernobyl than three mile island. it is important to understand that my charges to give you some technical background. i will try to do that and i will try to give you some perspective on what went on then and what went on -- what is going on now. ironically, the chernobyl accident started with trying to fix a design problem in the emergency core cooling system.
that system is what you need when you have a failure of a regular cooling and the emergency systems must come on theimmediately cooled thl reactor. even if your emergency systems work, the water may boil and you will get severe releases of radioactive activity. designers of chernobyl-type reactors, which were different from the water reactors in the sense that there was a huge graphite block used as a moderator. graphite is carbon and carbon can burn. there had been an accident in britain in 1957. a somewhat different type of reactor, but it also had graphite.
they wanted to make sure there would not be a gap between loss of power and the emergency diesel generators coming on to supply cooling. they decided that the emergency generators would take too long, one minute or more, to supply full power to start pumping emergency water into the reactor. they were doing an experiment as to what is the residual power in the steam turbine in the generator could supply power to the pumps. they actually did an experiment in a reactor full of radioactivity, 1,000 megawatts. that is 1 million kilowatts. 1 million kilowatts electrical is 3 million kilowatts -- just to make it real, each of us generate 1/10 up 8 kilowatts from heat from the food we --
1/10 of a kilowatt from the heat from food that we eat. the experiment went terribly wrong. it was supposed to be carried out at a certain power level. it was supposed to be done in the daytime. but there was a demand for power in the daytime and they were told to do it at night. the people who had the unfortunate job of doing it were not fully prepared to do the experiment because they were not supposed to have done it. the whole procedure started around midnight. they were supposed to lower the power enough, but leave enough power in the turbine generator that it could power the pumps for about 1 minutes until the generators in the system they
were testing took over. emergency core cooling without a break. the reactor is controlled by controlled routes. -- controll rods. -- control rods. the control rods were inserted to far. ped and steamedt started being generated in the reactor and a runaway reaction started to take place because the power started to increase. the power in the reactor -- the
maximum rate of thermal power was about 3 million kilowatts. in a few seconds, the power increased 100 times the rate did capacity. -- rated capacity. is that right? the virus eight up my notes about three hours before i -- ate up my notes about three hours before i came here. when the power increased suddenly, you had an explosion. you had a steam explosion. the reactor building was destroyed. there was not a second containment building that was read bust -- that was robust as at three mile island. there was a second explosion and a fire. the fire lasted for 10 days.
one thing that happened that was quite extraordinary that we have not taken enough notes up until the fukushima accident is when the graphite started burning and there were explosions. hot pieces of graphite that were on fire blew out of the building and landed on the turbine building of the neighboring reactor. the roof caught on fire and some pieces fell inside the next building, reactor nopal 3. -- number 3. the workers put out the fire along with firefighters outside. if that had not happened, there was a real potential that hydrogen in the turbine building would have caught fire and we would have had a multi-reactor accident.
we did not learn that there was potential for a multi-reactor accident at the same size. to this day in the united allow, we continue to permits for buildings to be built in multi-reactor sites. the fire was put out by 6:00 p.m. there was another major problem that is less known. at the bottom of the rbmk reactor, there is a pool. once the fuel melted, it was melting through the concrete. it would have reached the water from the bottom of the reactor and there would have been another explosion. three people went down into that highly radioactive water
and open the gates so that firemen could put hoses in and pump out the water. otherwise, it would have been an even worse accident. i wanted to reflect a little bit on the contrasts and comparisons with fukushima. at chernobyl, there was not a multiple reactor accident. we are fortunate that there was not because there were some very brave workers who had a great deal of presence of mind to replace the hydrogen generators with nitrogen. it was because of the alert ness of those workers that it was not more serious than it was. at fukushima, we had a reactor with seven sources of radio activity in trouble. they spent fuel pool containing
radioactive waste in units north 4 -- had spent fuel in a pool containing radioactive waste in unit number 4. i just want to note that in the middle of the fukushima crisis, the nuclear regulatory commission relicensed vermont yankee for another 20 years. it has more spent fuel in it that all of the four spent fuel
pools at fukushima that are in trouble but together. most of that fuel can be removed. but the nuclear regulatory commission did not order that. the larger lesson for me and one of the reasons i wrote my book on a dare from my friend and mentor, who is the father of energy policy in this country, is that he said five years ago about this time -- he has run the tennessee valley authority, the los angeles department of water and power. he said we should get rid of coal, nuclear and you solar. i did not think it was feasible. but i concluded that we can have a renewable energy future. that should be part of the
debate. we should consider whether we can make nuclear energy sacred. i would suggest they should be an occasion of what it makes sense to make plutonium just to boil water. that is what a nuclear reactor is, just to boil water. this idea of boiling water is firmly planted in the middle of the 20th century. maybe we should think anew. at least i think it should be a fresh debate. thank you. [applause] >> thank you. now we will hear from dr. jeffrey patterson. >> thank you. it is a pleasure to be aired. it will be a trip for me to -- it is a pleasure to be
here. it will be a trick for me to run this and my computer. i think nuclear energy is hampered by the three poisonous p's of nuclear power. those are pollution, price, and proliferation. we are seeing the price of the pollution today in fukushima. we know about price. the ambassador spoke about the cost to the ukraine, which continues in belarus as well. pollution is the thing we have to keep in mind in the connection between pollution and nuclear weapons.
there is no safe dose of radiation. you hear this all the time. harmless to human health. safe dose. it is pretty arrogant to think it is just us. what about the plants, insects? we know that low doses of radiation cause cancer. it is a direct linear relationship from low to hire. the more radiation you get, the higher your chances of getting cancer. every x-ray you get, every cat scan you get, effect accumulates. even if you were taking small doses of arsenic every day -- why would we want to increase the amount of radiation we get everyday?
we evolved with background radiation. you hear that radiation is all around us. and it is. we have high radon levels in people's basement. we know that causes an increase in lung cancer. there is no safe dose of radiation. there is no free lunch. it is what we consider acceptable. cancer and the effects of radiation -- when single dose of radiation is sufficient to increase cancer incidence years later. a 70 year old man getting a cat scan may have a one/100,000 chance of cancer getting that. a baby getting that will have a
1/2 chance of getting cancer. you have a lawyer for that to accumulate and live. these cancer -- you have a longer time for that to accumulate and lives. one individual in 1000 will develop cancer from a cat scan. in studies, it has been shown that even in a single hospital, the amount of radiation can carry 13 times for the same procedure. there is not a lot of standardize asian in medical radiation. we get radiation from that -- there is not a lot of in therdize aation medical radiation. there is the on welcome radiation we get from the nuclear industrial complex -- unwelcome radiation we get from the nuclear industrial complex.
it was common for me to do x- rays on pregnant women. we would do them on the baby and measure the head with the pelvis to see if she can deliver the baby. absolutely useless procedure. and yet we have radiated many babies from this. one x-ray of the fetus causes an increased incidence in leukemia in that child. this has been corroborated by other studies. a recent study in the journey of the american medical association shows that dental x- rays early in pregnancy where the woman is wearing a lap shield but not a thyroid shield causes lower birth rates -- birth weights.
it alters the metabolism that benefits the aegis. -- benefits beithe fetus. i think it is important for us to dispel this myth that there is a safe dose of radiation and that lower dose radiation is good for you and good for your children. but we are not worried so much about x-rays. we are looking at a longer-term picture. most of our data about radiation comes from hiroshima. it was like a big x-ray that the population got. we are getting a continual doses. people continue to in just this
because of the -- to ingest thist. -- ingest this. we do not know what the long- term effects are. we will have to watch for hundreds of years to know what the effects are. this is a cruel experiments. it enters the food chain. the food chain starts with the decomposition of the radiation. it works its way up from the grass eaten by cows. the children drink the milk. cowls are fed grain. we are at the -- cows are fed the grain. this leakage occurs throughout the food cycle.
the diversion to nuclear weapons is a big source that we have already gotten. it goes all the way to the re processing to waste storage. we have no idea what to do with bethe waste storage. these products continue to emit radon for thousands of years. this is occurring all over the world. it is part of the leakage of radiation out of the nuclear industrial complex. we know about radiation from hiroshima and nagasaki. thousands of people died immediately and another 100,000 died from radiation injuries. we are seeing increased
incidence of stroke and heart disease. that does not say anything about the psychological effect that is being visited on the japanese population now in many ways. we continue to do nuclear testing with over 1000 nuclear tests in the atmosphere. organizations in the 1960's found a ingredient in children's teeth. it continues today if we don't sign the comprehensive test ban treaty. the last explosion blew up a lot of coral. it floated over an island and
children were playing in the snow that came down. they thought it was snow, but it was pulverized coral. a young man who had is thyroid checked at bethesda subsequently died of leukemia. this effect goes on and on. this is what we can look at in terms of the environment. this is a pumpkin that was grown after we mediation effect had been done. they scraped off soil and added potassium. they put a rock product on the soil. this pumpkin was grown in 1985, 30 years after the explosion. this man is wearing a lead-lined
glove. you can see what it did to be pumped in 30 years later. we also have -- you can see what it did to the pumpkin 30 years later. these tanks blew up because hydrogen buildup, much like what happened in fukushima. 350 miles downwind. people still cannot go in. there are signs that say do not come in. the animals do not know that. they do not read the signs. they go in and get contaminated. if you are driving down the road, you see signs that they do not come into this or less.
it is too radioactive. i said how can they grow crops here where it is contaminated? they say they take crops from this area and ship them from areas where there is no radiation and mix the crops together. dilution is the answer to pollution? do you want your animals our children eating crops grown in this area even it is diluted down? this is the deposition in the ukraine. at the break, we will show a movie about a chemical coming out of the plant. of this istenetws
that it is not just the ukraine involved. it is all about and about. i visited a hospital one month after chernobyl. the contrast between what people were told in the two countries was quite amazing. even in germany, in a university town like madison, wisconsin, someone came up to me and said, what should i tell people? should i tell them to stay indoors? i get different answers from my nuclear engineers, from my position. i do not know what to tell people. he said in the captain next door, the house -- the cows are in the field. the radiation does not go even the everywhere. it tends to settle. i said, i do not know. this is the dilemma the
government and texaco is facing in fukushima. -- tepco is facing in fukushima. what do you tell people? there was an explosion in the reactor room and this man helped put out the fire. he has radiation burns on his pants. his hair has fallen out. this gentleman died because his blood cells stopped reproducing. this was a firefighter who was in an isolation tent. these were the acute radiation injuries that occurred. this is what you hear all the time. not many people died. just 56. you will hear about the other effects that go on and on from this period this produced chernobyl. the trees were all dead and the land was scraped off. this was two years after
chernobyl. i saw people scraping up dirt. i said, how do you know how much radiation these people are getting? the man opened his coat and said, i left my monitor at home today. that is what happens with a lot of the information from people who were working there. here we are in front of a sarcophagus. we are trying to build a new sarcophagus. we are short on funds. japan just announced they will not give any money because they have their own problems. we are looking at a situation where we do not know the long- term dramatic effects -- long term genetic aspects of this. we know very little about what has happened here. we are seeing aberrations in
animals and plants in the area. natural disasters have a iddle and an mem end. the fear lingers on and on. it is truly the forever pollution. the nuclear complex. we see many gloves -- we see many examples around the world. we need to keep this in mind when we talk about nuclear weapons and nuclear power plants. einstein said the splitting of the atom has changed everything save our modes of thinking. we have to abolish nuclear weapons. we have to prevent nuclear war. we do not like chernobyl and fukushima, a measure what the fukushima, a measure what the next